Government Stops Illegal Sand Mining

| April 16, 2015

Illegal sand miners must brace for a tough season ahead as government mulls over plans to come up with a law that would prohibit sand mining.

The Minister of Transport and Communications, Mr Tshenolo Mabeo made the warning when addressing a kgotla meeting in Ramaphatle in his Thamaga-Kumakwane consituency on April 14.

He said prohibiting sand mining would address illegal mining as well as allowing the affected rivers to rehabilitate. He said as of now, most of the rivers in the vicinity of the greater Gaborone had been severely affected by widespread cases of illegal sand mining.

Furthermore, he said government would ensure that penalties in the proposed law would be deterrent enough. However, he said, government through the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources was considering other alternatives to usage of sand to ensure that the construction industry would not be affected.

The minister noted that sand quarry had been identified as another alternative, adding that the intention was not to discourage people from building houses, but to protect the environment.

He appealed to residents to be on guard to thwart any intention of illegal mining in their area. Minister Mabeo said it was the responsibility of the residents to safeguard their area against illicit activities.

On other issues, the minister encouraged youth in the area to take aantage of government development initiatives such as Youth Development Fund.

Furthermore, he informed the residents that government had come up with disability allowance for people living with disabilities. Mr Mabeo explained that the disability allowance that would be administered by the Office of the President, commenced beginning of April this year.

He also encouraged the residents to take aantage of the poso card, which would alleviate overcrowding at the country’s post offices. He informed his constituents that through the card, residents were able to access some of the services offered by Botswana Post at any post office in the country.

Meanwhile, the residents complained that government took long to respond to illegal mining and added that illegal mining effects were devastating. Others called on the Thamaga sub-land board to fast-track issuing certificates for their plot as the village was only declared a gazetted village last year.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Business & Finance

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